Coolest university website ever?

Web designers, the gauntlet has been thrown.

<i>Screen shot from Zokei University's web campaign, via Adverblog.</i>
Screen shot from Zokei University's web campaign, via Adverblog.

According to Adverblog, this website — part of a recruitment campaign for Tokyo’s Zokei University, an art and design school — is the coolest university website ever. (Hat tip to @ConversationAge for the link.)

Quoth Adverblog:

The website looks exactly like a[n] 8-bit videogame, and I can’t imagine a better way to drive recruitment for an art and design school. If the website is so fresh and “brave”, you can definitely expect their approach to education to be as fresh and open.

It’s interesting, no doubt. But is it cool? It may be big in Japan, but would it work in the West?

What do you think?

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Author: andrewcareaga

Higher ed PR and marketing guy. Communications director for Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T) in Rolla, Missouri, USA. Slow runner, mediocre guitarist, lover of music and puns, and an avid St. Louis Cardinals fan. I blog and Tweet about #highered, #music, #gocards and #random stuff.

7 thoughts on “Coolest university website ever?”

  1. The difficult thing about “cool” is that what is cool is defined differently by each audience. segment or group. I have a great number of friends who would probably find this website very cool, but they all played the 8-bit video games and love nostalgia. I have other design friends who might think it’s cool just because of how different the design is, and many others who would think it rather childish. It maybe the “coolest university website” for some constituencies, but I doubt that ANY university website would be THE coolest for everyone…

  2. Pingback: Twitted by croyl
  3. I think this school has done well by designing for their audience, which is art/design students. I think the key is for universities to focus their efforts towards what’s “cool” to their respective audience. For example, a computer science school might design their logo around 0’s and 1’s, or a culinary school with food ingredients.

  4. I showed this to my 9-year-old son, admittedly a bit young to be recruited, and he sniffed in disdain. “Adventure Quest looks way cooler. Maybe they can have a university,” he says. As noted above, the nostalgia buffs may love it, and it may play well in Japan, but it’s not going to be winning any recruits from around here.

  5. Having not played a video game since “Space Invaders,” I’m not at all qualified to pass judgment on this design.

    Christian – Eloquently put: “an unqualified triumph of design at the expense of usability.”

    Kris, it will be interesting to see what university websites in 7 years will look like, when your son is starting to look at colleges.

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